2018 (UK), Drama, 1h 55m
Starring: Brooklynn Prince, Willam Dafoe, Bria Vinaite, Valeria Cotto & Aiden Malik
Set on a stretch of highway just outside the imagined utopia of Disney World, The Florida Project follows six-year-old Moonee and her rebellious mother Halley over the course of a single summer. The two live week to week at “The Magic Castle,” a budget hotel managed by Bobby, whose stern exterior hides a deep reservoir of kindness and compassion. Despite her harsh surroundings, the precocious and ebullient Moonee has no trouble making each day a celebration of life, her endless afternoons overflowing with mischief and grand adventure as she and her ragtag playmates.
I want to start by saying this is by no means a bad movie, it is beautifully moving, the cinematography is gorgeous, and the acting (especially the newly discovered 6-year-old Brooklynn Prince) is out of this world – but when it comes to the story or lack of, there is really nothing else there.
You’re constantly waiting for ‘that big moment’, and it never arrives.
The mood shifts can be really jarring, and Baker, blending The Little Rascals with his own brand of indie-realism, cuts a direct path to the heart – it would’ve just been nice if the movie went somewhere.
Saying all that though, there is no doubt a lot of heart in this flick, and it is a very realistic, modern look at poverty which we don’t see often on the big screen.